Previews of “The Striker — X-Division Assignments”

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This page leads into chapter drafts of a work in progress known as The Striker.

The X-Division Assignments is the series title for Wade Jarvis’ investigative and undercover work set in the late 1960s through the mid 1970s.

Wade Jarvis works for the Office of Naval Intelligence under a mysterious commander who answers only to the name Elmer.  Elmer tasks Wade to “put faces to names” as he cuts him orders to study Atomic-Biological-Chemical (ABC) Warfare at Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay.  Unusual to most orders, but typical for Wade’s assignments, he is to fail out so he can be sent to X-Division to presumably await further orders to sea.

Failing out is something Wade is very used to, and serving out a week or two in any of several commands’ X-Divisions has become routine for him over the years.  Service in this temporary capacity puts him into the flux of men in between assignments.  The constant traffic allows him to investigate matters without too much oversight.

The Striker – 1

Wade leads his team in a security sweep of the super secret SOSUS station off the southern tip of Bermuda. In the 1960s, the Navy followed every ship at sea through using a network of hydrophone arrays. Those listening stations could track submarines from across the Atlantic as they approached our shores.

They also heard submarines shatter at great depths.

The Striker – 2

Wade’s security team has transferred confiscated SOSUS material aboard a shuttle launch. Heaped on top of it and sea sick is the young cook-striker Dusty who is returning to Bermuda with them. For his age, Dusty didn’t seem to have much innocence left to protect. And experience found in the Navy rarely allowed it to survive.

Dusty is particularly anxious about a cassette tape.

The Striker – 3

Dusty, the former cook-striker for the Argus Island, emerges from the pit of sea-sickness, appraises the turmoil surrounding him, and takes up his private mission.

The Striker – 4

Dusty “jumps ship” as Wade’s security team joins the larger operation gathering SOSUS recordings from the Tudor Hill Laboratories, the analysis station on Bermuda.

The Striker – 5

Paxton finds an under-the-table duplicate cassette recording, but officialdom is not interested.

The Striker – 6

Jones draws Wade out about “loose ends” in the investigation—Dusty might have a copy of a top secret recording—and Paxton, another.

The Striker – 7

Dusty has gone with the last flight.

Paxton reveals he has mailed his cassette to his girlfriend in Seattle.

The Striker – 8

Wade and Jones run up against two suspected deserters.  After several weeks, Wade is face-to-face with Dusty again, apprehended as one of those two lost boys.

The Striker – 9

A search for a missing girl on Folly Beach adds to Wade’s growing list of injured youth caught up in a brutal time.

The Striker – 10

An ordinary week night in the Brig finds a sudden influx of prisoners.

Dusty makes a run for it.

The Striker – 11

After the trauma of Dusty’s killing, Wade has to undergo a re-enlistment interview.  He meets Elmer, his new Office of Naval Investigation handler.

Elmer offers a tease to induce Wade to ship over for another four to six years.

Wade arrives for Atomic-Biological-Chemical Warfare school at Treasure Island, San Francisco, California.

Wade is interviewed by Captain Smith in the subterranean offices in Building One:

“Where’s the goddamn tape?” His upper face glowed with fury as the cherry in the pipe lit his eyes red.

The Striker – 12

Wade comes across a Gunner’s Mate striker who want to kill commies.

The Striker – 13

How many hippies could you kill with a 10 kiloton warhead landing in Haight-Ashbury?

The Striker – 14

One of the escapees from the Brig, Bob Mathews, shows up in San Francisco.

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I look forward to your comments at the bottom of each of the chapter releases.